Oct. 28, 2007
LOS ANGELES - Sophomore goalkeeper Chay Lapin recorded a career-high 15 saves as junior Krsto Sbutega and sophomore Scott Davidson each totaled two goals to lead the No. 3 UCLA men's water polo team past No. 1 USC, 9-5, Sunday afternoon before a standing-room only crowd at UCLA's Sunset Canyon Recreation Center.
UCLA (16-5, 3-2 MPSF) snapped a four-match losing streak to its crosstown rival and also handed USC (13-1, 4-1 MPSF) its first loss of the season. The Bruins led 2-1 after one quarter and 4-3 at halftime, before outscoring USC, 5-2, in the second half.
The Bruins never trailed in Sunday's upset victory, as senior Marco Santos got the Bruins on the board with a goal from two meters, just 71 seconds into the contest. USC's Matt Sagehorn, who finished with two goals, tied the contest with 5:16 to play in the first quarter.
The Bruins never trailed after Davidson tallied UCLA's second goal with 4:08 to play in the first frame. Sophomore Tyler Jemmett handed the Bruins a 3-1 cushion with a goal as the shot clock was winding down, just 35 seconds into the second quarter.
Sagehorn's goal at 7:03 in the second frame cut UCLA's advantage to 3-2, before junior Russell Simpkins scored with 4:48 to play before halftime. The Trojans cut their deficit to 4-3 on a goal by Justin Rappel with 55 seconds remaining before the break.
With nine seconds to play in the first half, Lapin thwarted a penalty shot by USC's Shea Buckner, allowing the Bruins to enter the second half with a 4-3 lead.
UCLA outscored USC, 2-0, in the third frame with goals from Davidson and Sbutega. The Trojans got as close as 7-4 and 8-5 in the final quarter before the Bruins pulled ahead, 9-5, on a goal by sophomore Scott Swanson.
With the win over USC on Sunday, the Bruins captured 2.5 points in the Lexus Gauntlet Challenege, an annual 18-sport competition between UCLA and USC. Should both teams meet in postseason competition, points may be redistributed.
UCLA returns to action at UC San Diego on Saturday, Nov. 3. Game time is 6 p.m.
No. 1 USC at No. 3 UCLA
USC Goals: Justin Rappel 2, Matt Sagehorn 2, Jovan Vranes
USC Saves: Adam Shilling 4